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Title: The Hybrids, An Epi-comic Satire

Author: An M. D.

Release date: June 30, 2021 [eBook #65732]

Language: English

Credits: Charlene Taylor, Barry Abrahamsen, and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at (This file was produced from images generously made available by The Internet Archive)




Mollusks, Saurians, Pachyderms.

A cordial concocted in love and sincerity
Of sarcasm and sense, with grains of severity,
For healing whatever the purchaser pleases,
But specially suited to female diseases.


Entered according to the act of Congress, in the year 1871, by
In the office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.



HAIL blest stupidity! impervious shield
Of dullness hail! No thorn in all the field
Of reason, wit, or satire, hath been found,
Could reach thy soul in toughest bull-hide bound!

Refreshingly unconscious thou dost graze
Amid the brambles of sublunar ways,
In rare beatitude of placid soul,
Thy skin unbroken sound and whole;

Smiling serene, while scratches, wounds, and pricks
Of fate adverse, and fame’s vexatious tricks,
Which goad the thinner skinned to agony,
But prove a pleasing stimulant to thee.

How almost enviable is such state.
Where angels of bliss indifferent await
To keep the stinging brood of scorn at bay,
And turn the keener darts of love away;—
Where grateful thistles bloom the live-long day,
And long ears wave triumphant at each bray.




Ye Gods assist! aid me ye heav’nly nine!
Let all your pow’rs cooperate with mine,
Justly to celebrate the theme divine
Of woman hatching into masculine.
From high empyrean descend, ye Graces,

If there ye dwell, (if not where’er the place is,—)
Unlock, ye Sciences, ye Arts, prepare
Donations rich from water earth and air!
Unite, O Poesy, in one bright chain
All metaphors both sacred and profane!
Fuse, all ye elements, for this my story
In one great holocaust to female glory.
So may the bard in worthy style proclaim
The Amazonian honor, name, and fame;
And so to all posterity transmit
Those deeds redoubtable in measures fit,—
That wond’rous story, born on earthly sod,
Disperse through all the universe of God.
I sing the birth of th’ Amazonian age
Whose rampant outcoming may well engage
The philosophic thought of wrinkled sage,
The poets flippant measure, and the page
5Where history records, with equal care,
The most important and the least affair.
No feeble, helpless waif was born that day,—
Feeling to life, its weak uncertain way,
With gentle breath, a thought of heav’n that lingers,
Kissing its velvet lips and waxen fingers.
But, sooth to say, a fierce volcanic child
Tore into being, amid orgies wild.
Begot of unrest, conceived of unreason,
Carried in envy and born out of season,
It burst on the world a monster, a fright,
A meteor baleful, a mildew and blight,
A terror, like the fabled torch of yore
A mother dreaming, in speechless anguish bore;
A Ghoul, half human, shapeless monster half,
Not quite a kangaroo, not quite giraffe,
With countless social improprieties,
Weak indiscretions, contrarieties—
A bundle of irregularities
With woman’s skin to wrap its rarities.
A child of many hopes which proved to be
A harpy foul of evil augury.
Its upper half boxer—like brawny and strong,
The members termed nether were scrawny and long;
And ended in fixtures quite fit for its trade—
Huge talons, like buzzard’s, for tearing things, made.
It’s nose might have stood for a Monitor’s pride,—
A cutwater shapely to buffet the tide,
With “noli me tangere” carved deep and wide
In wrinkles upturning with scorn either side.
The tongue was a marvel of skill and design;
’Twas snake like and forked, but the forkings were nine,
6A complicate unit, a digitate thing.
Each digit played loose, and was armed with a sting
Which was death—the whole waved like banner unfurled
From its foam-covered mouth, defiantly curled—
A gulf that was yawning to swallow a world.
Carnivora genus ’twas easy to see,
Whose serrated tushes, tho’ frightful may be,
Could rip reputation, in style mighty free.
Its caudal appendage, reluctant to show,
Sharp-pointed, like workers’ in brimstone below,
Curves fiercely behind it, and, lashing the air
Shall sting itself writhing in final despair.
Me Hercle! what simile, metaphor true,
The vision can render that breaks on the view,
When upward we wander and meditate where
The glory of woman is crowned by her hair?
The muse is uncertain, but rather prefers
The quills of the hedgehog with some kind of burrs,
Whose clinging tenacity savors of what
When speaking of woman is never forgot;—
Which scatter a shower of deadliest darts
From arsenal copious of stingings and smarts,
O’er optics that twinkle with serpent-like arts.
So, coming at random, unblest by the bans,
’Twas fondled by Katies, and coddled by Fans,
And doctored according to recentest plans;
To embraces bony was savagely folded,
On bosoms of granite was badgered and scolded.
The grannies in order to properly breed it,
At outset like christians endeavored to feed it,
But vainly; for, scorning all patent-right fixtures,
Soft pap it rejected, and baby-milk mixtures.
7Away with your catnip, ye wrinkled viragos!
Your soothing concoctions, your sops and your sagos—
Give syrups of pepper, not weakly diluted,
And waters of Marah—they’re charmingly suited
Impulses to quicken, not easy computed.
For solids use thistles, and thorns, and rough brambles—
The fodder that asses collect in their rambles.
A cabbage to give it agreeable savor,
Is found in the meadows, of suitable flavor.
Thus forage and fluids, with caution selected,
’Tis like, in the temper, will ripen reflected.
One species of felines in manner befitting
Will show in the impulse for scratching and spitting.
Another polemic Grimalkin, I’ll venture,
Peculiar sensation will wake by its stench, or
There’s nothing in breeding, and feeding, and teaching,
As doctors in physics and ethics are preaching.
Such regimen followed, with strictest attention,
Will breed you more squabbles than scribblers can mention.




Wherein is found a full and true relation
Of tribal gathering in convocation,
Designed and called by sundry faded beauties,
For reconstructing man’s revolted duties,

Of such discordant elements compounded,
It ended in “confusion worse confounded”—
A gossip’s ripping bee with rags to mend it,—
A sick’ning witches stew with hags to tend it,—
A love-feast gross—a sacrament absurd
Of painted demirep and gallows bird—
A woman’s carnival, a crazy fair—
A vast impromptu home-made dinner where
All projects wild and visionary schemings,
Licentious crudities and zealots dreamings
Unwashed were tumbled in—each other spoiling—
9One single, mighty cauldron, hot and boiling
Till smell of everything but sulphur rose,
And made creation gladly hold its nose.
As erst, on tall Olympus thundering Jove
Convened th’ assembly of the Gods above,
In solemn council, ripe for high debate
On mighty themes and grand affairs of state;
So now, when envious hate had placed her throne,—
When baseless jealousy was broadcast sown—
When discontent had poisoned all the land—
Ambition frenzied issued her command
And congregated, drawn from lands afar,
Women intent to wage the wordy war.
By common impulse summoned to the field,
(Fledglings, eager their sprouting arms to wield
In strife, for vain renown and empty fame,
At honor’s cost and woman’s holy name,)
They met to revolutionize the nation;
To topple down all bars ’twixt sex and station—
With reckless zeal and sacrilegious hand
To upheave the social systems of the land;
Forsooth, to cast their fancied Bastile down,
And win unbounded license for their crown.
Panting, in furious concourse gathered then
This rabble rout, in uproar shaming men.
Now might be seen, with faces brazen there,
Beauty in ev’ry style from brown to fair
Widows, with smiles and wiles in rare perfection,
Seeking a mart for second hand affection.
Old maids, whose charms tho’ wholly unprotected
Blind man to seize had cruelly neglected.
Unfortunate beings whom nature unkind
10Had stinted in powers of body or mind.
Whom love had deluded or envy had sour’d,
In gloomy recesses now huddled and cowered,
Chewed cardamon fiercely and balefully glower’d;
For want of affinities sadly complaining,
Or bitterly mourning virginity waning.
But baffled and hampered by fate in their plan,
They sought their misfortune to visit on man.
The usual style—men glut themselves with evil
Till sickened, cloyed; then charge it to the devil,
And by perverted ethical provision
Transform the harlot to the prince precision,
Whose zealous dupes with saintly honors load her
Dying in unction of a holy odor.
Some few there were who, still for husbands angling
Affect the opposite of rant and wrangling,
Soft, sentimental bread-and-butter misses,
Purring like kittens, and open to kisses.
Bewildered by philanthrophy perverted,
Of them naught good or bad could be asserted.
Their souls, pervaded by some sleepy vapor,
Emit a sickly light like penny taper.
They curts’y, loll, and bend with sighs and fawning,
With simp’ring smile their faces faintly dawning,
And would, indeed they would (unheard of kindness!)
Rejoice if man were healed of mental blindness.
It pains their gentle souls ethereal,
To view such waste of good material.
If men would only see just how the case is
And humbly sink to their intended places,—
Ah me! such stout convenient nasty creatures!
Such splendid foils to woman’s lovely features!
11They’d be so useful in the she-millenium
As butments for the grand proscenium!
Doubtless such putty products sleek and glossy
Some purpose serve, in esse or, in posse,
Tho’ heaven knows one scarcely can believe it;
Perhaps, as floating log, when sailors heave it,
Declares their speed by rate at which they leave it,
And so assists the nautical profession,
These bubbles show society’s progression
And earth the better is for their possession.
Among the other wonders of creation
Who sped in haste “from earth’s remotest nation”
To magnify this great conglomeration,
And darted icy jets from jetty eyes
On all who dared oppose this high emprise,
There came a certain pair, free lovers higho,
Whose souls bemoaned their sex’s helpless plight,
And sauntered, arm in arm, that crowd among,
They usually were loud enough of tongue;
But, having bolted dinner in advance,
Confessed themselves, “two fools for utterance.”
Twin sisters, they were called in gay pretense—
Sin twisters rightly, in a moral sense.
Bold-eyed, they strode uneasy to and fro,
Like tigers caged to complement the show
Intensely lib’ral in their private action
They scoff at mere conventional compaction;
And, even edicts from the eternal throne,
As far as promulgation makes them known,
If framed to fetter spinster, wife, or “widder”
But empty ceremonial consider.
They hold themselves at liberty to cater
12To healthy promptings of their carnal “natur;”
For this, they tell us, is a right attendant
On our condition free and independent.
Since God to rule our bodies has commanded,
We’re bound to do it fair and even-handed,
To ev’ry function deal impartial measure
Of duty, worship, labor, and of pleasure.
So, skillfully, they argue; whether truly,
I own I’m unprepared to answer duly:
For I’m not learn’d in law Levitical
Nor skilled in “schemas” Jesuitical.
We’ll therefore give a simple explanation,
A truthful mathematic demonstration,
Of fancy, fact, or whimsical delusion
Toss’d on the surface of this wild confusion;
Hoping the next or other generation
Will yield a bard of heavn’ly ordination
Who, skill’d in ethical analysis
May classify this rare catalysis:
Who gifted with discriminative art
Shall better know the tasteful pruner’s part.
Him all the world with rapt’rous recognition
Shall usher to his hardly-earned position,
And cry “What have we here?” a poet new,
Whom nature self hath sealed a poet true!
With presence prompt to grace the grand occasion
In force were seen the priests of that persuasion,
Which runs the mail across the mystic border,
And manufactures miracles to order.
Nor think it strange such birds should flock together;
For being clearly of a common feather,
They find, tho’ not in visible connection,
13Their points objective in the same direction.
Id est,” while differing in the main design
They operate a “non-competing line.”
These winnow wisdom from a world of chaff
The others suck it through a telegraph.

Of rhymster’s and scribblers some dozens were there,
With intellects sadly in want of repair;
Quite shrewdly divining their chances must be
The fairest, where patching and darning were free;
Reporters, whose need of sensations compelled them,
Like rag-men, to dig in the gutters that held them;
Sleek prelates, whom zeal for religion assisted
To garble good logic, ’till, crooked and twisted,
It argued that measures, tho’ wicked and hateful,
If righteous in purpose, are healthy and grateful.
So, deeming that suffrage and other such folly
Might possibly benefit mother church holy;
Nor seeing what future could ever prevent it
From popular proving, their countenance lent it.
And lawyers, whom oldest of records declare
Distinguished for scenting the carcass afar,
Came hotly careering and snuffing the air.
The meeting included political hacks,
Who carry the nation about on their backs,
Nor wanted the proper admixture of quacks,
Clairvoyants, and witches, magnetic magicians,
And humbugs notorious, all sorts and conditions—
The lightest of chaff, tossed loosely together
By turn of a chance, or freak of the weather.
Like Quixotes exploiting with banner unfurled
And license unbridled the shame of the world.




WITH passengers and boxes all aboard,
With pitch abounding and with brimstone stored,
With each convenience science can afford,
With hellish flames beneath that hissed and roared,

A fearful dubitation rose, ’twould seem,
What kind of cock would best let on the steam;
Whether to open by singing or prayer,
Or bang a gong, as most appropriate there,
To start, with happy auspices, the train;
Then let her run, till gudgeons hum again,
’Twas argued in a satisfact’ry way,
By sapient functionary old and gray,
Some kind of canticle must first be sung,
To limber up the hinges of the tongue,
15That, loose in joint, the sisters might go in
And glory in this Grand Palaver win.
Proclamation for singists to volunteer
Brought forth beldames wrinkled, rheumy, and blear,
Gathered from some Sahara bleak and drear,
While here and there, a flower sandwiched between,
From some belated garden, might be seen.
Giving this Pandemonium a choir,
Which howled and screeched with a demoniac fire.
From throats with agonizing spasms wrung,
The notes in spiteful jerks and spurts were flung;
And this the maniacal hymn they sung.

“We gather, we rally
From mountain and valley—
Our banner is flung on the breeze:
The bonds that have bound us we sever!
Shall tyranny humble us ever?
No never! no never!
Not any, by sev’ral degrees—
For man may come, and man may go
But we rush on forever.
Shout, liberty! Shout long!
Go in for freedom strong!
When woman arises
She scorns all disguises—
Then tell to the nations that wonder
Religion’s a crime and a blunder;
We brand it a fable
And soon as we’re able
Its trammels we’ll scatter to thunder.
’Tis woman shall shiver
Its artifice clever,
16For man may come and man may go
But we rush on forever.
Then hip, hurrah!
Sing fal, la, la!
The glorious day is breaking,
When love is free
To you and me—
You have it for the taking.
So don the breeches,
And leap like witches,
The very ground beneath us shaking;
Let impulse draw
By higher law
And we’ll obey it ever
For man may come, and man may go
But we rush on forever.”

This song with mad applause and frenzied cheer
The crowd received—from which it doth appear,
“Music hath charms to tickle savage ear”
Like storms terrestial, this infernal blow
Died out, and business had some little show.
Above the motley multitude presiding
To give the necessary rule and guiding,
An elephantine beauty coarse and hard,
Of bust colossal, bearded like a bard,
On democratic tripod throned in state,
With visage wisely stolid, stiffly sate.
She first essayed t’evoke, like Homer’s God,
Order from chaos, by traditional nod.
Through some mishap the mighty effort failing
She rose and ’gan the stated song retailing.
Sternly she waved her pasteboard truncheon high,
17While frowns the lack of queenly pow’r supply.
Quite heavy was her plaint, beyond compare,
And rendered with a true teutonic air.
“Hail sisters! brothers hail! (if such there be
From pride of sex and vulgar passion free.)
This day when woman first begins to live,
A welcome warm to all her friends I give—
This day, in maidhood’s pure unsullied name
True freedom and equality proclaim.
Here, even here, upon this dirty plank,
With democratic juices foul and rank,
Resurgent truth shall stand with new-born pow’r,
And justice date from hence her natal hour.
The place of birth, so far as I can see,
Gives no complexion to the progeny.
I therefore deem these walls, secure from danger,
As fit for lying-in as any manger.
(Don’t pun the term, nor term it pun—receive it
Accordant with the emphasis I give it.)
Eventful day! destined, if truth succeed,
To be emancipation day indeed!
My soul prophetic glows with inward fire!—
My thoughts to loftier, heav’nlier flights aspire!
I see futurity’s productive womb
Impregnant with our bestial masters’ doom.
With head exalted, upward turning eyes,
Waiting to mount the zenith of the skies,
I see the coming woman where she stands,
On reason’s height, with free unfettered hands
To dark forgetfulness cast all her bands!
Her dress abbreviate, to suit the times,
Displays the fair proportions of her limbs;
18While, poised like Ellsler on one dainty toe
She points the other at the crowd below:
Thus showing at one end the bent to soar,
At ’t’other, proper scorn for man, and more.
Since strong desire, ’tis said, hath power still
To work its own fulfillment, through the will,
We soon shall see the sprouting of her wings
And rare development of other things.
Tremble tyrants! no more shall slavish chain
Of sexual love our faculties restrain.
Woman no more shall live like gilded toy,
Your daily solace or your midnight joy.
Each weak, effem’nate grace henceforth we scorn,
And will no more of softer mould be born.
No more will cling like ivy to the oak,
(That horrible tho’ venerated joke,)
No more will coo round man, like petted dove,
To win the sweet amenities of love.—
Nor pay in woman’s anguish and despair
The costly tribute to his fost’ring care.
We’ll grind the curse beneath our conqu’ring heel
And heav’n itself besiege for its repeal.
Let all the list’ning earth attend the hour
When man shall abdicate the throne of pow’r;
When woman shall assume supreme command,
The sceptre of dominion in her hand.
Delicate are we, forsooth! and so weak
Our feebleness must man’s protection seek!
Fine phrases! Jugglers tricks! the gilded pill
Wherewith man chloroforms us to his will.
Look here! Behold my muscle, and then
Decide if women need be slaves to men.
19I say ye’re victims to your childish fears
And foolish impulse. Lo, these forty years
I’ve trod the earth the vestal that you see
“In maiden meditation fancy free,”
And never one assailed my vig’rous charms
Or dared adventure in their lusty arms.
If wine ye drink and patronize good cheer
Ye may aspire to such as I appear,
Eat, drink, and act like man, and manly grace
And strength will baby softness soon displace.
And then, in fullness of parturient time,
In some more favored land, some happier clime,
Ah! then, emancipated, disenthralled,
The weaker sex no longer basely called,
Ships we’ll build, delve in mines; with sturdy blow,
Will lay the “monarch of the forest” low:
Quarry huge rocks, exalt the lofty tow’r,
The ocean ride and breast the whirlwind’s pow’r—
The pond’rous train, its head ablaze with light,
We’ll drive, like arrow, shooting through the night—
Tame the wild horse, and charm the tiger’s rage—
With deeds of valor brighten hist’ry’s page,
And triumph o’er the world! So woman’s honor,
Like robe of comfort loose shall hang upon her,
To doff or don, convenient disguise:
So all the world shall stare with wond’ring eyes,
All trifles note, with imbecile surprise;
Just how she wipes her nose, how wears her stocking,
And barely smile when she does something shocking.
Such meed hath earthly fame. But I forbear.
These thema are not for me. Be mine the care
To guide your counsels well. It follows next,
20That resolutions—something for a text—
Some “thema” which you may at will discourse on,—
A kind of banneret to centre force on—
Are now in order.”

Thus, her task completed,
The burly dignitary straight was seated.
And while her speech excited some sensation
Her ending fairly shook the whole foundation.

On heated brains, with scattered thought distracted,
The unexpected proposition acted
Like acid into alkali decanted,
Hubbub rousing: Sisters fluttered, paled, panted,
Chattered and squeak’d, in one tremendous frothing,
Yet bound to go the swine complete or nothing.
All, crazed by new responsibility
Skipped to and fro with rare agility,
But nought produced of much utility.
At length, while now the “pop,” not timely tasted,
To stale unpalatable mixture wasted,
In misty distance looming blue and vastly,
Thrust forth her awful visage grim and ghastly,
That spinster prim, Apochryphalia Playgood:
A tall, angular and imperious jade,
Who still, tho’ not in fame what all would say good,
By lucky chance retained the name of maid,
Despite what envious gossips sneering said,
And deemed herself a heav’n appointed agent,
Like bold Joan, to head the gorgeous pageant.
As murky cloud o’er morning’s rosy blush,
Her presence bred a melancholy hush.
She, in her haste to meet the chair’s suggestion,
21At first designed to move the previous question;
For reasons twain and good—it first occurred,
And was a potent something, she had heard,
Much lauded in the halls of legislation
For forcing things to speedy termination.
But when one, wiser in her generation,
Opined the monster like to cut debate off,
She vowed she’d “go her death agin it” straight off.
A vetran oft ’gainst “death or victory” pitted,
She countermarched, to common sense remitted
By this snubbing; then from her spacious pocket
Dug up the following immortal docket:
The which, with “hems” by readers always needed
Forwith, to read, she simp’ringly proceeded.


Whereas, a wise mysterious providence
Has summoned us to arms in self-defense—
Has brought us through “perils, flood, and field,”
(In this his wisdom specially revealed)—
Through desert places with few to carry us,
Or guard our virtue, and none to marry us—
Whereas, from man with much upon his hands,
With care of railroads, horses, houses, lands,
With love of smoke and countless fetterments
For us the hope is small of betterments—
Whereas, again, it greatly doth behoove us
To be a-doing lest the Lord removes us
Unprofitable servants from the land
And use less brazen sticks upon his stand,
Or lamps with oil of grace more apropos,
T’ illuminate his earthly temple, so

Resolved, first.

That revelation, history and song
22Have ever done to women grievous wrong,
Regarding her a weaker vessel made
For coarser man to love, protect, and aid,
While truly, if the case were justly tried,
Each faculty that fosters manly pride,
She owns in full, and mother-wit beside;
Whereby we know that cunning women can
Eclipse the dull experience of man;
And, tho’ to work is not her special mission,
She lifts great loads “by woman’s intuition”
Therefore, in order that the race may thrive
The man should hold the plow and woman drive.


This meeting gives approval hearty to
Victoria’s proposition bold and new,
To bore a hole right down to old Cathay,
Through which, while twilight-beams still ling’ring play,
The parting sun may dart his upward ray
And banish night—so shall bold woman’s sway
Prove harlinges of an eternal day.


The Maker in his several creations
Took coarse material to build foundations,
But rose by imperceptible gradations
To gases in the highest elevations.
The lesson taught is plain. ’Tis easy seeing
That man’s a coarse disreputable being,
While woman rounded into grace imperial,
Was doubtless made of gaseous material.
It follows hence he’s only fit to mate her
As under mates the upper crust in “natur.”

23 Fourth.

And last: Resolved, in solemn conclave met,
Although we ne’er can liquidate the debt
We owe to holy mother Bantam’s name,
Hereby we publicly renew the same.
This paying debts we clearly understand
Shows want of confidence on either hand.
We therefore pledge the whole of women kind
To pay no debts of whatsoever kind.

In lieu thereof we vote her now a niche,
And canonize her as a blessed witch,
(The only kind of Cannonizing we
Consider worthy of our bravery)
Whose manly inde—— no we scorn the phrase,—
Whose brazen firmness courts the public gaze—
Whose noble disregard of social rules—
Those spider-webs designed to fetter fools—
All plainly indicate her as the she
Exponent fit of woman’s destiny.
Her views of individual repose,
Must needs ameliorate the bridal woes;
’Twill further much convenience, rest, and pleasure,
And is withal a sanitary measure.
At least such doctrines logically tend
To bring our revolution to an end.
Her free abandonment of orbit high,
Where once she shone the glory of her sky
Make her in human reason’s eye appear
A fallen star—the evening one ’tis clear—
The morning star, ’tis known, shot from his sphere
Just at creation’s dawn; from which ’twould seem,
24The night draws on whereof our poets dream.
But we behold in these events design
Which shows fulfillment of a plan divine.
Redemption is a scheme, as we believe,
Made possible by fall of luckless Eve.
Like problematic benefit may spring
From sister Bantam’s modern tumbling.
With one united voice we ever will
Exalt her as a spiritual virgin still.
Her busted form perpetual shall stand
By desolated hearthstones through the land.
In sulphurous flames her utterings shall glow
Bright in the midst of ev’ry household wo.

Now, Madame President, with your permission,
One word, to fortify the strong position
In these four resolutions taken. Before,
However, I proceed to offer more,
One thing I wish to have you understand,
My own, as yet, is at my own command.
Thank God, I’m not like silly married noodles
Reduced to suckle twins and drink in puddles;
Not firmly bounden body, soul and breeches
To toil and slave like Irishmen in ditches,
For man’s convenience or emolument,
While he, in Congress or in Parliament,
Sits cool like lion in his lordly den,
Jeering at woman with his fellow men.
Vipers! wretches! Of earth the filth and scum!
Would heav’n, in wrath, might strike the monsters dumb—
That heaviest curse that can on mortals come—
Had I ordained the building of this planet,
25Or been consulted ere the Lord began it,
The universe one station would have seen
Of man and man’s belongings bare and clean;
One place where free’d from plagues to craze and pester,
Woman might dwell with nothing to molest her.
Where hairy lips should never scratch our noses,
Or kisses paint our damask cheeks like roses—
With pepper cheap and vinegar at will,
With none to order woman to be still,
With muddy boots and curling smoke no more
To spoil the curtains or bedaub the floor,
With flies and filth and hourly sweeping banished,
And e’en the ground of crystal, smooth and planished—
No living thing, save woman, clean and clever,
To sit alone forever and forever—
With absolutely naught to curb or fetter
Can mortal maid expect or ask for better.

But ah! when once the fates such offers spurn
The golden moment never can return!
Such sad mistake no effort can repair!
There’s no reprieve! we’re doomed to grin and bear!
At least, while selfish men control and own us,
They can’t obtain my plan without a bonus.
The sole resort is, by concerted movement,
To force adoption of that grand improvement,
Before this honorable body stated,
In sev’ral resolutions just related.
Dear Sisters! Do you rightly comprehend
Of cruel man the purpose, aim, and end?
Have you observed how from the first beginning,
He schemed to catch unhappy women sinning?
26That, while confused and blind with fright and wonder
He might the more completely them under?
And ever since contrives to lord it o’er ’em
By holding up that “lapsus in torrorum
With full intent I solemnly believe
To terminate our sex at mother Eve;
And equally perpetuate his own
By forcing us to carry boys alone?
Whether ’twas accident or nice design
That ultimately saved the female line
And keeps it, holy records fail to show.
Perhaps, one of the “lost arts”—this I know;—
Such confidence have I in female cunning,—
If woman willed to keep the girls-a-running
And stupid man refused his aid about it,
She’d find some easy way to do without it.
Retaliation is a law of “natur,”
Which was decreed by the benign Creator,
Or stated by some holy commentator,
And must be right. I therefore recommend
Such measures be adopted as shall end
In making man, the author of our woes,
A “lusus naturae,” the pride of shows.
No more let children male encumber earth
But strangle at, or just before their birth.

In resolution one, you may perceive
What mighty amphitheatre we leave
To woman open; where complete success
Is guerdon sure to cunning and finesse.
Lest some its secret sense may fail to gain
Permit your humble servant to explain,
27Nor deem the “modus operandi” vain.

A tale, for illustration good and fit,
Is somewhere told; I think, in holy writ.
A righteous man whose name in scripture rings
As king of concubines and other things,
A mighty temple builded, rich and costly,
With ornaments of gold and silver mostly.
To that Jehovah whom his race adored
The house was deeded, hoping ’twould afford
Free grazing in the pastures of the Lord,
The transit smooth o’er Jordan’s stormy billows,
And pardon gain for sundry peccadilloes.
For seven years, reported dry and dusty,
Thousands of men, with sinews strong and lusty,
Labored like beasts at timber, stone, and plaster
To rear its column, wall, and huge pilaster.
Yet tho’ no stick, or stone, or bolt, or rivet,
Did Solomon’s own labor give it,
(Or, if he did, no writer ever said it)
He cunningly contrived to gain the credit,
Of its erection. Thus, to work by proxy
Seems sanctioned by the highest orthodoxy.
And is procedure, if come-at-able,
With woman’s nature quite compatible;
Thereby, from labor we may gain exemption
And so inaugurate our great redemption,
When woman to her proper “sphere” promoted,
On husbands shoulders shall be raised and toted.
I hate this silly rant on “woman’s sphere!”
’Tis simply nauseous to lib’ral ear,
The very word’s disgustingly offensive
28Suggesting bounds to woman’s plans extensive;
Implying still, whatever one’s pursuit is,
Existence wasted in a round of duties.
An Irish bull—a term chimerical!
She has no sphere—she’s hemispherical!

’Twere vain to iterate in word specific
The long complaint not gentle nor pacific
Of which the vixen’s fancy proved prolific.
For similes affecting or destructive
And wild hyperboles of scorn productive,
She gleaned the country o’er from snowy Maine
To verdant Alabama’s flow’ry plain:
Ransacked antiquity’s moth-eaten store,
And drained the fount of legendary lore
For intermittent precedents to prove
The inutility of human love.
She spawn’d forth words with vast facility
And talked with ceasely volubility,
Guiltless of reason or civility;
Affording thus a patent wool-dyed sample
Of teaching both by precept and example.
And yet this brawling of such heady creatures
Is not without some few redeeming features:
For, tho’ the utt’rance is a public curse
Suppression might induce condition worse.
Surplus vitality demanding vent
In rampant caracoling thus is spent;
And so perchance avoids a sad explosion,
By action too prevents as bad corrosion;
Since woman, made of matter much refined,
Is keen finesse and subtlety combined,
29And greatly prone, as seen in state primeval,
To pioneer in taste of good and evil.
In proof consult what ev’ryone supposes
A veritable tale by holy Moses.

Now when this patient had been well delivered,
While yet the panting bosom thrill’d and quiver’d,
At once there rose greetings loud and long,
Commingled bass and treble, from that throng.
Then might you see advancing on that stage
A tott’ring form becrowned with snow of age,
On whom the thoughtful gazed with bated breath,
As one might gaze on wrinkled bride of death:
For, hoary hairs, colleagued with folly,
Must ever wake emotions melancholy.

But ah! when aged women takes to soaring,
And, motherhood forgetting, and ignoring
“The divinity that doth hedge” her round,
In strange and unbecoming walks is found,
Deserting sacred joys of hearth and home,
Delighting in forbidden paths to roam.
A gloom o’erhangs the soul, like fun’ral pall.
Still, not such horror fell on all
For, certes, loud and lengthened was the call
When saintly mother Katy Bantam rose
With “healing on her tongue,” corns on her toes,
And upward rubbed her venerable nose:
Then solemnly her spectacles adjusted
As if the nation had that moment “busted”.
A harmless old gray hen who took to crowing
With ne’er a comb or caudal feather showing,
Her spouse attained distinction in the nation
30Expelling foxes from all public station,
When cheek by jowl he rode with freest rider
The rallying cry “log cabin and hard cider;”
(That reckless charge and wild triumphant yell
The sage of Lindenwald remembered well)
And after, much affected gallopading
On abolition hobby, “nigger-raiding;”
Which happening the crowd to please,
Made “hobbying” a family disease.
His dame for notoriety then itching
Was worried from propriety and stitching,
And, goaded by the mad’ning titilation,
Mistook the itch for heav’nly inspiration:
And, being crazed, despite advancing age
Began her missionary pilgrimage.
She vow’d a vow, if folks would only ask her
She’d travel post from Maine to Madagascar
To make a single speech: Hence, small persuasion
Procured her services on this occasion.

So when adorers all had screamed and shouted
She op’d her mouth and feebly spouted
Chaotic mumblings of senility,
Sad proofs of nacent imbecility.
It seemed she trusted thoughts would wax and strengthen
Unlike our forms, while ages grow and lengthen:
Or deemed a speech a kind of rubber fixture—
Perchance a marv’lous hom’opathic mixture,
Whose pow’r, ’tis boasted by the science makers,
Increases, spread o’er fifty thousand acres.
She dismal talked of terrible “upheaving”
Of systems and peoples, quite past believing.
31“Upheaved” the church, “upheaved” the contract civil;
“Upheaved” poor man, but couldn’t eject the devil.
She catch-words droned—“oppressed,” “enslaved,” “humbled”
“Downtrodden,” sound and sense together jumbled:
As if, late motherhood developing
She soothed declining years enveloping
The public doll in shreds and filaments
Of Ethiop’s cast-off habiliments;
Or, if she’d stipulated in a barg’n
To fulminate a giv’n amount of jarg’n,
And muttered tales designed for terse and witty
Which ’stead of mirth excited only pity.
A legend ster’otyped she droned and drivelled
Of Brobdingnagian beldame lean and shrivelled
Who urged by passion wild, by love enraptured,
A Liliputian bridegroom sought and captured.
The groomsman too, it seems, was small and puny;
Likewise the priest quite “little for the money”
Which granny good esteemed so queer and funny
It must induce a general conviction,
Unto the tall belongeth jurisdiction.
This really seemed, amid the wild confusion
Of sense, the only possible conclusion.
No other ornament adorned her tale—
To find a moral, even priests must fail.
Abundance more, as previously requested
The good dame spoke—no doubt her “level-best” did,—
Then from her painful labor ceased and rested.

Of all this mighty concourse, hither borne
By various mood, just one came here to mourn.
A bachelor, in attitude forlorn,
32Who sadly grieved that ever he was born,
With features smileless, haggard, grim, and pale,
Sat roosting on the semicircle’s rail
Which there enclosed the sacred altar in;
His elbow on his knee, on hand his chin.
When now there came a lulling in the roar
And none at present occupied the floor
He madly leaped to gain the speaker’s station,
In labor groaning with a young oration,
And wildly screamed this famous declamation.

“O woman, woman; foully fair,
Thou source of bliss and yet despair—
Thou pride of heav’n thou curse of hell,
Thou greatest woe on earth that fell
When mad Pandora op’d her box
And horrors issued forth in flocks—
Thou richest gift vouchsafed to man
When heav’n look’d down his wants to scan,—
Thou type of goodness, beauty, worth—
The tie that links our hearts to earth
With silken cords we scarcely feel
Yet strong as pond’rous bars of steel—
Thou ray of glory from on high,
Thou charmer, cheater, rib awry,
How oft for you I’ve madly cried!
How oft become a tempocide!
How often suffered, bled, and died!
Deceiver vile, yet fount of truth,
A Dian pure, a harlot Ruth,
O, why wast thou to mortals given?
To tempt to hell—to lure to heav’n!”

In agony he writhed at its conclusion,
33And swoon’d amid the general confusion.

While red with flame the oven still was heated
Like hapless Daniel’s seven times repeated,
And self-elected cooks were fairly aching
To have a finger in this public baking,
Some sharp director of the frothy brewing,
Intent on shrewdest ways and means pursuing,
Espied a form whose locks, uncombed and matted,
Betokened hasty rising,—or belated,—
Involving toilet scanty and neglected:
Or, more belike, he cunningly affected
Some studied roughness in the coat and trouser,
To give “eclat” as leading “rabble rouser.”
Tho’ mingled with peculiarities
His mind a storehouse was of rarities,
Wherein dame nature wrought in broadest plan,
The full unstinted measure of a man.
Exuberant fancy pruned to limits fit
A yield profuse returned of golden wit;
While wisdom, logic, sense, and virtue rung
With eloquence spontaneous on his tongue.
One, briefly, who the happy art possessed
To do the thing another just professed.
Him they beset, with gen’ral acclamation,
To “throw himself” for their regeneration.
The time was trying, critical th’ occasion:
But finally he yielded to persuasion,
Tumbled his mane accordant with his custom,
And, while he wished their vanity would bust ’em,
Talked gingerly as dubious to trust ’em.
His speech, tho’ tough enough, and smooth and limber,
34Had not that sturdy, manly, ringing “timbre,”
Which carpenters of old from stock selected,
When massive structures were to be erected.
He seemed gallant, who, minded to be civil,
Reduced himself to childish woman’s level;
And, so regarding their capacity,
Talked little sense with much vivacity.
As jugglers, when their trade they ply,
Of tinsel make display, to catch the eye,
And thus have “scope and verge” to cut their capers,
Beneath the very nose of stupid gapers.
He whiles like angry lion growled and grumbled,
While mutterings like distant thunder rumbled.
Anon, wit’s scintillations dazzled all,
Like sunlight sparkling on a waterfall.
With small regard for aught, for nothing stopping,
Rising he thus broke out like champagne popping.

Sing Io Bacche! Io Susan sing!
Shout hallelujah! let the welkin ring!
Let all the male creation bound and free
Hosannas raise in woman’s jubilee!
The mighty tide is rolling, waves are dashing,
Oppressors tremble, kingly thrones are smashing;
Triumphant woman’s chariot wheels are flashing,
And bigot’s bones like brittle glass are crashing
Beneath the blows of woman’s sabre slashing.
Great is Diana! marvellous her plan!
For her I feel as never yet for man.
I could for her my energies exhaust
And deem my ends attained at trifling cost.
The breeches fit us all ’tis plain to see:
35God bless the girls, they’re just the boys for me!
*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *
Should you decide in view of my devotion,
To use your quasi votes for my promotion,
Depend, such action promised and concluded
Would prove the wisest thing that ever you did:
For, “entre nous,” ’tis thought, my charming sisters,
Although you’re known of old as great persisters,
And, doubtless, versatile enough and tricky,
For easy roads—yet when the mud is sticky,
The wheeling rough, or up a heavy grade—
Perchance a weighty burden on you laid,
To carry which your backs were never made,
Coarse muscle in the wheelers might avail
To move a load when lighter beasts must fail.
I say not this with view of underrating
Your priceless value, nor that price abating.
I merely would suggest a fair division
Of labor as perhaps a wise provision.
’Tis seen that dogs and other beastly samples
Teach us to hunt in pairs, by their examples.
Though women shirk the part of baby-feeders,
They still might work in double-teams—as leaders.
I recognize your fitness for the station,
Bow to the law of nature’s ordination
And raise my voice to swell the great ovation,
That waits this movement’s culmination.
Yet, humbly here would proffer a petition;
That, when her hopes are ripened to fruition,
And woman sits above us high and holy,
She’ll not forget to use us, (base and lowly
As we confess ourselves,) when powers brutal,
36Like courage, strength, and zeal, may suit all
The circumstances of the new connection
’Twixt vulgar man and feminine perfection,
Permit us still, as an especial favor
From ruder toils and war’s alarms to save her:
The priv’lege grant, to fight, and toil, and swelter,
To furnish her support, and peace, and shelter;
To shield her angel face and fragile members,
From summers burning and from chill Decembers.
Yet, should such functions smack of arrogation
We’ll service render in some humbler station.
Perchance as barbers act, with greatest pleasure;
Or, kneeling low, as tailors, take her measure.

When woman is enthroned and man deposed—
The masculine dynasty fairly closed—
All this would follow as a thing of course—
As one ascends, the other sinks, perforce.
So much is plain to my poor comprehension;
But pardon me when now I briefly mention,
Some quandaries which, spite of all my grinding
Puzzle my brain past any hope of finding.
If now, as Susan argues, (save the mark!)
Fair woman should with man no more embark
In trade or any other enterprize,
Calling, pursuit, or act beneath the skies,
Beseech you, lovely social reconstructors
Who then shall play the role of reproductors?
A man might dishes wash, might swing the ladle,
The dinner cook, and even rock the cradle—
But how to fill the crib without a wife, or
A concubine, is more than I can cypher.
37Just here I find, like Butler to a pin,
Myself a bottle, closely stoppered in.
And when the great millenium has met her,
When woman has no toil or care to fret her,
Does she design to live and reign forever?
Hath fate no pow’r the thread of life to sever?
Reckless, as to the conquered world’s possessors,
Has she no thought or care for her successors?
And if maternal functions be discarded
How shall the future of the race be guarded?
I only ask for private information—
No doubt there is a simple explanation,
Which I would fain possess that I might offer
The same to any godless gentile scoffer,
Who, sometimes might prefer unjust complaints,
Or doubt the wisdom of the rule of saints.
I fain would clothe myself in plated mail,
That, being safe, I need not shrink or quail
When far aloft I hear your blazoned banner,
And battle—after politician’s manner.
If you will aid me by your ballots on
My rough and rugged road to Washington,
Your modes of cure, and projects of prevention,
Shall, ladies, have—my earliest attention.”
Thus he bewildered them in crafty ways;
And being flush of non-commital phrase
Baptized their senses, sprinkling cloudy haze;
Shouting reform by way of peroration
Till all were drunken wild with exultation.
That such delusive mixture pleased them well
Attest unearthly shriek, hysteric yell,
That deluge-like upon him ceasing fell.
38’Twas like the chatterings and caws that rose
From o’er excited rookery of crows
When raven sermon rounded to its close.
The spirit power conquered not a few,
Who, falling, shouted, “Hoop-te-doo-dle-doo.”




IN patching up this coat from tatters rotten,
Be sure the sable cloth was not forgotten.
And fit, indeed, that moral bridge-contractors
Have place, as well as moral malefactors;
So when these last are forced to fly to cover,

The first “by mediation” bear them over.
Accordingly when cry for more was sounded
The heav’nly manna fell, supply unbounded,
Then rev’rend Pee-Wee, rose, a humble man,
A spindling soldier of the Lord and ’gan,
In gentle murmurs half apologetic:
As if he feared the rude and energetic
Was unbecoming to his sacred station,
Or, dreaded lest a rousing, sound oration,
Might shake the country to its deep foundation
And bring destruction on this glorious nation.
40However, being one of slow progression
Still in the A, B, C, of his profession,
Perhaps, ’twas only modest, wise, and prudent,
To step with caution, like a freshman student.
A stripling faded, pale, and neutral-eyed,
Like one in milk-and-water color dyed,
Rocking and swaying on his “feeble knees,”
Like flexile willow bending in the breeze,
He toyed as daintly with mighty themes
As if he handled doubtful eggs in dreams.
So have I seen a pale potato vine
In darksome cellar, tender grow and pine
For want of sunlight, dew, and bracing air;
And naught could e’er the early loss repair,
He, urged by zeal some action to perform
Which might, by marv’lous chance, promote reform;
The pious fame whereof should never cease—
Got softly up to speak his little piece:
With cringing step, profusely bowing too,
Crept carefully, and made this rich “debut.”

“I come, a sinner bowed with sad contrition,
Dear ladies, on my heav’nly master’s mission.
I wish “while yet the lamp holds out to burn”
To do this sinful world a friendly turn.
If you’re not wholly dead to sense and reason,
Perhaps you’ll hear the message spoke in season,
You’ll find recorded in the sacred word
In Genesis, from chapter one to third.
On sacred page much wisdom is discerned
And more inferred, as you’ve already learned.
Read here some secrets of the everlasting;
41The rest we draw from heav’n “by prayer and fasting.”
The views with which my soul has so been favored
I’ll now unfold with sundry comments flavored.

When after lengthened ages of debating,
And after all the heavn’ly host were tired of waiting,
Th’ orig’nal plan was reached for man’s creating,
’Twas found before the work had far proceeded,
A rare, peculiar kind of dirt was needed;
No sooner known, than necessary orders
Were issued to the country’s farthest borders.
At once, in all the fields, by all the hovels,
Angels were seen with rocking pans and shovels,
Washing, sifting, like California miners,
In search of requisite amount of shiners.
At last, while in this digging, scratching, scraping,
Vast periods of time had been escaping,
Loud trumpet tones the heavn’ly rafters shaking,
Proclaimed the dough already for the baking.
The baker’s men, without regard to wages,
Had been experimenting all these ages,
With oven hot as ever they could stand in,
To learn the trade, to sort’o get their hand in,
By making beasts, ring-streaked, speck’d and striped
Before they undertook to build a biped.
With mould, and paste, and pepper all collected,
They now began the labor long projected.
The prentice first, a witless kind of flunkey,
A total failure made, and cooked a monkey.
Next him, an older, consequential brother,
In haste quite confident tossed in another,
But found with nothing in the world to hinder
42He’d darkey made by burning to a cinder.
The foreman then with losses vexed and “stuffy”
Essayed his practiced hand, in manner “huffy.”
Still he brought out, if I dont tell a “whopper”
His cake in boastful style, done brown as copper.
’Tis true, this batch was overdone but little,
Yet, ruined in the temper, crisp and brittle.
Now, when he saw this shameful waste of batter,
The master thought ’twas time to end the matter.
He scrimped and scraped and gathered ev’ry portion
Lest he should also make a mere abortion.
Had just enough. All heaven was delighted
To see it drawn all smooth and clean and whited.
But when they’d crowned him first of human kings
To rule and govern sublunary things,
It seems they held a supplement’ry meeting
Wherein the project was advanced of now repeating
That process which had just so well succeeded,
And build a partner thought by Adam needed.
They deemed him not precisely in position,
Through accident of sexual condition,
T’ obey that wholesome social regulation
Which contemplates increase of population.
When first announced the notion vastly pleased them,
But soon they found, while blank amazement seized them,
Through heedlessness and lavish waste uncommon,
Not stock enough was left to make a woman.
Ingenious substitutes and plans were tendered
And e’en some jealousy was thus engendered
By their rejection; but of all suggested
Not one succeeded well when fairly tested.
The master thought, since nought could come of planting,
43Could he from Adam steal the scion wanting,
(Which might be done by slumber o’er him wafting)
He’d try a kind of independent grafting;
Thus, with good luck, save Adam lots of trouble,
By furnishing, at no expense, his double.
Agreed to—since they could not do without it:
Still, having more or less of pain about it,
The scheme involved some shrewd and crafty trapping;
And that is why they took the good man napping.
Awful slumber! a most expensive lodging,
Creating debt no man succeeds in dodging.
A national debt foredoomed to last forever,
With tax not one evades, tho’ ne’er so clever.
Blind bard! who sweeter sung for want of eyes,
You blundered sadly once, to my surprise:
Sleeping (’tis true, the bible proves it so)
“Brought death into the world and all our woe.”
If aught is taught by Adam’s heavy fall
It teaches man should never sleep at all.
No Eve, no sin, this fearful uproar keeping;
No sin, no death; no death, no mourners weeping;
Had luckless Adam not been captured sleeping
But up and dressed in reasonable season,
It stands to unassisted human reason
No sinful woman would have lived to be
Prolific source of so much misery.
*    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *
Hail, rain, thunder, tempest and hurricane!
Howl and shriek! Split your throats! ye’ll blow in vain
To drown the whirlwind, furious and wild,
That burst, from tongue and eye, on this poor child.
Hags and witches! not such the woful flutter,
44In your weird ranks, when mortal chanced to utter
Some magic spell, some scrap of holy writ
That sent you howling to th’ infernal pit.
Such hate unspeakable, such fiery blazes!
Lightning flashes! well-nigh their mem’ry crazes.
Mild inoffensive man! who humbly sought
The truth in singleness to sow, but brought
A bitter, bitter harvesting instead
Of hurtling wrath on his defenseless head;
A simple artless priest, ’twas plain to see
Or else, the heathen that you call “chinee”
His final fate, no chronicles reveal it
He pity left behind, tho’ few to feel it.

And now, in sable garments, slow uprose
A trafficker in apprehended woes,
Who thought to bring the uproar to a close,
By pacifying gesture bland and mild;
And smooth, with oil of grace, this ocean wild.
A goodly morsel of humanity,
Compound of arrogance and vanity.
Possessed of lordly form, imposing mien,
He dwells in conscious sanctity serene,
Amid conceded pow’rs; and seeks to charm
By soothing platitudes, all dread of harm
From souls awakened: and, crying peace, peace,
In pulpit stands a fox protecting geese—
Better, by indications of the jowls,
A heav’nly miller making carnal tolls.
Janus his name, a curiosity
A double faced, a rare monstrosity!
One visage ministers in things divine,
The other serves the devil genuine.
45In keeping good his harp of “thousand strings,”
Could all at once discourse a dozen things.
While one with “devil’s dream” kept up a pother,
Old “coronation” rang right off the other;
To aid their cause he’d little inclination;
Yet never could resist the strong temptation
When woman sought his aid to gain salvation.
Of boats he knew—but feared to leave the craft
He paddled now, until the female raft
He saw at hand, could safely upward bear him,
In case his present owners wished to spare him;
Misdoubting lest this willow-wicker scow
A pirate prove, wood-hull and brazen prow,
In consequence by taking middle course
He fired, like breechless gun, with little force.

Quoth he: “Let discord cease! Behold the morn
Leads on the day when woman shall adorn
The dirty caucus—shall the noisy poll
Reduce obedient to her control—
With radiating purity illume
The dark recess where justice sits in gloom—
Shall penetrate unarmed his filthy lair
And tame the democratic grizzly bear;
With slender finger touch his tawny hide
And, Una-like, in triumph mount and ride—
Assume th’ appointed place as heav’nly guide,
And, first in penitence, as first in sin,
The resurrection of the race begin.
Our brother errs—no doubt with best intent;
For, ordination hath such cleansing lent,
To all who have its sprinklings underwent,
(Except to Henry Ward who never needed
46Superfluous seal that from the church proceeded.)
To sin “non potest” in its strictest sense,
That is, with actual malice “in prepense.”
Tho’ human frailty may, at times, creep in
And give the merest semblance of a sin.
Yet priests themselves, like all, when myst’ries blind ’em,
Must needs interpret as they chance to find ’em.
To me the sacred word most plainly shows
A moment opportune the Maker chose,
When Adam, plunged in slumber’s deep repose,
Was freest from the carnal thoughts that fill
Our waking hours—as common grafters still
Scions select when winters downward force
The heated saps which through the body course,
For cooling and refining—so the shoot
With pulpy crop less passionate may fruit,
And purity with innocence divine,
Though earthly vase displayed, incarnate shine.
What sacrilegious mortal dare assert
God’s plan abortive? or in pride pervert
His manifest design? Do we not choose
The holiest to rule, the bad refuse?
Some superficial careless hist’ry skimmers
Read otherwise the feeble light that glimmers,
In records old, where rays uncertain play
Like “will-o-wisps” at night, to lead astray
The traveler belated, and pretend
The weak must ever to the mighty bend;
And gravely show, with self-complacent mien,
How in the annals of the world ’tis seen,
Of all the host that ruled by “right divine”
Scarce one in thousands own the female line.
Not so read I. ’Twas ever held, thou fool,
47For logic good, “the exception proves the rule”
What rule, but woman’s rule could ever be
Intended by this just corollary?
To him who better logic brings than that is
I’ll freely give my next week sermon gratis.
Moreover who would father, mother leave
Except it were to serve a second Eve?
In truth, from truth we may not distant swerve
To say that cleave in Hebrew means “to serve.”
Nor deem this strange—in theologic lore
Are many things that might surprise you more.
But these are mostly kept for special use
To guard against heretical abuse;
To dazzle vulgar minds with grand display
And keep their curiosity at bay.
You’ll therefore please excuse—but count me one
You’re quite at liberty to lean upon;
And think yourselves most fortunate indeed
If you dont find you lean on broken reed—
For daily is my life this word fulfilling,
“The flesh is weak, and oft the spirit’s willing.”
At this he ceased his sophistries to spin,
His features shining with sardonic grin,
And went his way to other troubled pools
With cunning to bewilder other fools.



AT last, when all had howled and shrieked their fill—
Her trumpet each had blowed, at freest will—
Had fought and wrangled to her topmost bent—
When wild tempestous fury all was spent,—
When sisters found no other theme to touch

But greatly marvelled they had done so much.
When seed for early sowing was exhausted
And summer crop of thought was brown and frosted—
A solemn hush like terror o’er them fell,
More melancholy far than fun’ral knell.
Just then, when trembling seized the stoutest form
Slow in that lull which heralds coming storm,
The frowsy Blunt arose—a staid old joker
Renowned for nought especial save as smoker.
A genial wight, who, were the truth confessed,
Of good intentions greater store possessed
49Than politic discretion, in his breast.
His powder might be somewhat slow exploding,
His musket ne’ertheless was non-corroding.
If one would tempt its fire, I shouldn’t wonder,
Slow match he’d better use, then stand from under.
He, being stirred, displayed unwonted vigor
And showed himself successful humbug-digger.
With fervor boiling, hot with earnest passion
He polished up his theme in foll’wing fashion.
“Go, triumph! ye heralds of heavenly wrath!
Let wild desolation illumine your path!
Spread discord and blighting, unspeakable woe,
Dissension and turmoil wherever you go!
Sow, jealousy, envy, and causeless distrust;
Tread confidence, honor, and manhood in dust;
Aye, bawl yourself hoarser than ear-splitting gongs
To whine of injustice and shriek about wrongs—
Let decency blush at the tatters and rags
Your madness has clothed them in, vilest of hags—
Strut, stagger and bluster across the broad stage
All foaming and frothing in wildest of rage—
Go, blasting sweet maidenhood’s vision of bliss
And pois’ning the lip of affection’s pure kiss.
Go! Blow your tin bugles and rattle your pans,
And dance your vile dances, your shameless can-cans—
Rejoice in your conquests, and dream your weak dreams,
Ye cats paws of shrewder political schemes,
But listen ye shall to the teachings of sense
I offer in kindness and not for offence:
A foretaste of smartings you’ll certainly feel
When squadrons of metal shall rattle their steel,
And, cleaving your armor of dullness in twain
50The gospel of soberness burn on your brain
To rankle while being and reason remain.
Your God-given powers are running to waste;
Dry ashes for apples shall pall on your taste;
False logic ye utter, delusion unsound:
Ye’re heaving up boulders that still will rebound;
Now rolleth the wheel still, the waters recede;
Ye are helpless and hopeless at uttermost need;
The weakest of children, ye fondly believe
The rain that is falling ye’ll catch in a sieve;
It may be, since marvels as marvels are o’er,
When water is frozen and water no more.
Yea! silly as daughters ambitious of yore
Like modern reformers, God’s work to review,
Who chopped up their father his youth to renew;
But found only left, when their work was complete,
Bones broken, heaps putrid of gristle and meat.
Your dreams are Utopian, your labors in vain;
The laws of Jehovah are fixed as the main—
Still, calmly to argue this question so wide
If men were consenting and suffrage were tried,
If woman to stations of honor were called,
To govern and legislate duly installed;
And edicts displeasing by her should be made,
Say where is the muscle to make them obeyed?
Ah! spitfires! nurse your wrath but ill concealed!
Ye may despise the rustic blade I wield;
But homely truths, your guilty conscience owns,
Hit hard, and oft, like honest country stones,
Their smitings shatter sinner’s rotten bones.
Ye blind, whose self-conceit, of envy born,
A glorious Holland’s teachings laugh to scorn,
51Or hers whose genius bloomed in Afric’s night
And fruited in unequaled Pink and White.
Is it the throne or pow’r the throne behind
That makes the mass obedient and kind?
If leopards cling tenaciously to spots
And Ethiopians, the senseless sots,
At man’s command wont even change their skin
When white is cleaner far, will all within
By woman’s magic finger be remoulded
And mute rebellion sit with arms enfolded?
As well attempt to dip the ocean dry
Or paint away the color of the sky!
Or, (since ye deem all spots a deep disgrace)
A-tip-toe stand, and taking from his place
The sun, wash off the freckles from his face!
Ye say, as oft was said in times gone by
“The water drops wear stones”—I’ll not deny,
But merely hint to all good wives and “kinders”
Each drop that wears the stone is smashed to “flinders.”
“Cui bono,” is a simple short equation
Explained by rule of “cost and compensation,”
Which any one may cypher at his leisure;
Result, of course, according to his pleasure.

Come, tell me now, ye heartless parasites!
Come, say, who of you all have not your rights
Say, is it you, you shiftless gossip spinner,
Who scarcely cook your sweating husband’s dinner,
Who nurse pretended invalidities
And belch in proof your foul acidities;
Who simulate the pain you never bore
In lame excuse to gad the city o’er,
52And only darken twice a day your door?
The proof is on your lazy padded bones!
’Tis in your gaddings o’er the paving stones!
Or is it you with sixteen yards of silk
Who never yet repaid your baby-milk,
You strutting figure blocks, who make display
Of fancy shams that honest toil must pay—
Whose father bends with age and waxes pale
To buy the flounces on your sluttish trail?
Or who but thou, with dainty waxen fingers
O’er whom a father’s fond affection lingers,
To soothe your pain and share your childish sorrows,
And pave the way for countless glad to-morrows—
Pays endless bills, expenses of tuition,
And finds his hopes but ashes in fruition,
When you repay his never-failing care
With black ingratitude, and bring despair?
Or you, you shameless wanton, holding high
Your head and leering with salacious eye—
Vampire! whose godless dissipations drain
Your cuckoled husband’s hourly shrinking vein,—
Who coin, in riot waste, his heart and brain
To guilty dollars;—lapping even now
The sweat that oozes from his aching brow
Whose boundless trust and love, by you betrayed,
In wild extravagance and pride, has made
Through silly gallantries,—you know it well—
A forger first, then inmate of a cell?

Relentless fate to thee unkind, O thou
Of rigid oblong face and planished brow,
With bony arms protruding down your side,
53In stiff conceit, unbending as your pride,
What darling right hath been to thee denied?
O prim propriety, dost grieve because
Too quick relief from Indiana’s laws
O’ertook your unconsidered application
And left you cheerless on a drear plantation—
A lonely leafless trunk in grim repose
Amid divorce’s chill and loveless snows,
Both vice and virtue flying from your soul
As torrid summers fly the icy pole?
Fastidious pink! whose hypersens’tive notion
No suff’rance bore for animal emotion,
Who pleaded, uncongenial elevation
Had raised you o’er the master of creation—
I’ll risk a random guess, incarnate fair,
You rue the hour that made you as you are.

Perchance ’tis thou, O dusky sprite petite
Of modest air and soulful murmurs sweet,
Whose glad hosannas ring with joy complete
To full admiring houses at your feet?
Or thou, histronic dame, enkindling dreams
Of olive groves, and burning orient beams?
Ah! no, ye lucky ones! ye have the right
To charm a list’ning world with dear delight
And win two hundred dollars in a night.

Ah! ye sly cats, who licks the cream of life
In character of widow, maid, or wife;
Then, purring sweetly rub your silky skins
In sweet cajol’ry on our rugged shins,
’Tis cruel, is it not? bareing to view
54Secrets deftly covered up by you?
’Tis cruel, is it not? to lift your paws
And draw the velvet from your pitless claws?
Cruel, to scout your immemorial claim
To innocence, and block the cosy game
You’ve played since Adam, our deluded sire,
Raked chestnuts for his siren from the fire?
What if we let you have your childish way
To bear the heat and burden of a day—
To rear the homes and fortresses and guard
The nation with the nightly watch and ward?
Ye’ll deem the compensation wondrous small
To make the laws ye must enforce for all!

But why on man the awful burden load
Of human miseries decreed of God?
Why charge to him all sorrow since the fall
When well ye know ’tis heritage of all?
Hath woman’s fearful sorrow made you mad
That ye exemption claim you never had?
Such calumny unjust ’tis burning shame
To heap on father’s, brother’s, husband’s name.
Think ye to rear on fancies such as this
The fallen altar of domestic bliss?
Its temple reconstruct with sand and chaff?
You’d better reconstruct yourselves by half!
What need of all this stir, this noisy blow—
This vain parade of wrongs, this empty show?
Go back, ye rebels! seek your native air—
Be happy in the way your mothers were!
Go sit at Jesus’ feet, meek pupils there
And wipe them with your penitential hair!
55That woman hath more wrongs, with man they cause,
Than man, from being woman’s partner draws,
Is false as——well, I would not wish to swear,
But truth I’ll tell, for truth is only fair,
And, since ye dare the reading of the roll
Ye can’t complain when I display the scroll.
Go through the town, inquire from street, to street,
And this the truthful record ye shall meet.

A hundred men shall study day and night
How best promote the family’s delight;
And ten are sunk beneath the base control
Of vice, in hopeless servitude of soul.

A hundred men shall gather worldly pelf,
While each shall spend a tithe upon himself;
And ten shall waste in drink and gambling hall
Their children’s patrimony and their all.

A hundred men, with true parental care
Their sons shall guide and guard their daughters fair;
And ten shall school their brood in street and dust
Regardless of their highest holiest trust.

A hundred men shall, in their av’rage rate,
The manly part perform in home and state;
And ten, by selfishness and devilish hate
Humanity shall fairly desecrate.

Aforetime, woman dear, ’twas so with you,
And shall be so again—for God is true,
Nor will forget to gather, as of old,
56His wand’ring children in the heav’nly fold.
When clothed upon ye are, in calmer hour,
By soberness, and clad in reason’s pow’r,
Ye’ll marvel at the mad delirium
And weird delusions that with fever come.
Then man shall, softened, bend his lofty pride—
Then both restored shall journey side by side,
And common love shall be the common guide.
It’s not of swillers, sots and blocks, I talk;
I mean good sturdy anglo-saxon stock.
Let these arise, assume their rightful place,
And justly stamp the occidental race—
No more corrupt our honest mother tongue
By mixing alienisms thick among
The euphonies in which a Milton sung;
Nor shapeless Puritanic mongrel breed
By crop with Gallia’s atheistic creed.
Let man be what omniscient God designed,
And woman act the part of womankind.